It is important that action items are tracked and assigned or delegated to responsible parties. Unassigned action items are useless as they will most likely never be completed.
This form will help you track, delegate, and follow-up on all corrective actions that result from an investigation.
Steps to a quality corrective action plan
State the Problem
Stating the problem is the first step to be considered when writing an action plan to correct problems. Unless the problem is stated appropriately, finding the root cause and in turn, identifying the solution is not feasible.
For stating the problem, ask yourself a couple of questions:
- What is the current situation?
- What should be the right situation?
- What is the reason behind the current situation?
- What is the impact of the current situation?
- How can the current situation be rectified or resolved?
The answers to the above questions will help you to state or define the problem statement.
Define the Plan
Once you’ve stated the problem, what is the next step? Move on to define the action plan.
Once the problem statement is prepared, now it is time to define the action plan. The action plan helps to design the implementation phases of the processes. Assessing the current problems and evaluating the root causes are the key elements highly used in defining the action plan.
The following criteria must be included in the action plan:
- Change in the policies, processes and procedures
- Training for resources
- Changes in management system and tools
- Product redesigning or re-engineering
- Resource analysis
- Implementation processes
Once the action plan is strategized, assigning tasks to the team is the third important step. Create ownership to take care of each step in the corrective action plan. Many times, the process implementation from the corrective action plan requires collaboration from various departments, practices and functions.
As already articulated, creating ownership or resource allocation is a vital step when writing the corrective action plan. Establishing deadlines is the next step to be considered in your plan. A plan without a defined schedule will definitely fail. Ensure the deadline defined to complete each step is appropriate and adequate to comply with all the processes.
Unfair deadlines also create chaotic situations during the implementation phase. Inadequate deadlines lead to quality issues and delays in the final deliverables.
Track and Monitor the Progress
Once the processes, resources and deadlines are defined, it is imperative to develop ways to manage the progress. You need to create procedures to track and monitor the progress when writing the plan, this form is ideal for simple action plan tracking.
Tracking and monitoring the progress while implementing processes from the action plan is critical to business growth and success. Doing it right at the first time always helps to save quality time and energy.
An additional tip for getting buy-in to your corrective actions:
Link to Compliance Record
Corrective actions don’t exist in a vacuum. Rather, they should connect to relevant areas of the compliance record to communicate the full context of the problem. Each corrective action should be linked to the appropriate source, such as:
- Audit results.
- Nonconforming Materials.
- Safety incidents.
- Customer complaints.
Members view the corrective action plan template below
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Members download the corrective action plan template below
Join The EHS Center for FREE Now